Updated: May 18
I wanted some simple semi-floating book shelves for above a desk in my homeschool room but the cheapest (with any kind of quality) ones I could find on-line were around $100. I searched for a long time and finally gave up and convinced my hubby to build me some. We were so happy with how these turned out that we built several more to put above all the toilets in our house.
These are pretty simple to make and all for under $10! The grand total for each shelf came out to $9.27 (which includes a 6% sales tax). That is for the wood, stain, and brackets (I forgot to add the cost of screws and can't remember what we used). All you need to build these shelves are a miter saw, drill, level, some screws and a sponge brush or paint brush.
I found these great brackets at Ikea for $0.75 a piece! How can you beat that?! They come in black, white and red. They are 7" x 7”x 1" and say that they can hold a 7 ⅞" deep shelf but our shelves were 9¼" deep and they have been holding up just fine (we used 3 brackets per shelf for extra stability). My book shelf dimensions were 39½" x 9¼" x 1½". I haven't loaded the shelves but I do have a few heavy books on the end of one of the shelves and I haven't noticed any cracking or issues from the weight.
One piece of this 2" x 10" x 10' White Fir wood from Lowe's made 3 shelves and only cost $11.51 a board. My husband used a miter saw to cut the wood into three 39½" long pieces which fit perfectly on my wall between one wall and the cupboards in my homeschool room. We only ended up using two of the three shelves he made because I wanted to have enough room for some taller books and binders. I spaced my shelves with the first one 26½" up from the desk counter. The next shelf is 15¾" above the first shelf and 16" from the ceiling. I also wanted to make sure I would have enough room to put a larger desktop computer under my shelves someday which is why I decided not to use all three shelves.
We bought a 32oz bucket of stain from Lowe's for $7.98. The brand we used was Minwax Dark Walnut Oil-Based Wood Stain. We ended up making 3 larger shelves (book shelves) and 4 smaller shelves (for bathrooms) and the one bucket of stain was enough for all 7 shelves with plenty to spare (note we did not stain the back side that would be attached to the wall). My husband did two coats of stain on each shelf (and let them dry between coats).
If you're wondering where the containers on the shelves came from I picked them up at my local Dollar Tree. You can find the labels which include 160 classroom supply labels in my TpT shop here. And the (editable) binder covers and spine labels here. I got the super cute black globe for $19.99 at Ikea. Yikes that's more than my bookshelves cost but it was too cute to pass up! Here's a link to it on their website. I had my sister-in-law write the Bible verse on it for me in her beautiful script handwriting. It might be my favorite homeschool room decoration!
You can click on the images below to see the labels. The cute little (fake) plant with black vase is also from Ikea. The school bell my mom found for me at a garage sale. The oversized clothespin decoration I got at Crate and Barrel years ago. Unfortunately, I can't remember where I got the adorable wooden lobster puzzle (probably at a small shop in Maine).
I hope you enjoyed this post and are able to build some of your own D.I.Y. book shelves! Be sure to let me know if you do make some and how they turn out. I'd love to see your pictures!!! Thanks for stopping by! And a HUGE thank you to my wonderful husband for making these for me! Can I get an applause for all the wonderful teacher husbands out there who help their wives in the classroom?!!!
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